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Close Helmet from an Armor of Tsar Dmitry I

A work made of steel, brass, and traces of gilding.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of steel, brass, and traces of gilding.




Italian, Milan

About this artwork

On the upper visor above the vision slits on this helmet, the Moscow coat of arms with an imperial double-headed eagle identifies the owner as Dmitry I, the ill-fated tsar of Russia who falsely claimed to be Ivan the Terrible’s lost youngest son. After only 11 months of rule, members of the Russian nobility (boyars) assassinated him and shot the ashes of his body out of a cannon.

Dmitry rose to power with Polish support and was heavily influenced by Western taste and politics. This Italian-made helmet (with matching breastplate and backplate, also in the Art Institute’s collection) represents the height of Western fashion at the time and might have been a diplomatic gift. Only traces remain of the original gilding that once highlighted the bands of etched decoration.


On View, Gallery 239


Applied Arts of Europe


Close Helmet from an Armor of Tsar Dmitry I


Milan (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Steel, brass, and traces of gilding


Approx: 31.8 × 23.5 × 29.2 cm (12 1/2 × 9 1/4 × 11 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Purchased with funds provided by John Edwardson; through prior acquisition of the George F. Harding Collection; purchased with funds provided by Paul Carbone; Laird Landmann Arms and Armor Fund; purchased with funds provided by Daniel Manoogian, purchased with funds provided by Michael Haney.

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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